Rapper-singer Drake has withdrawn his two 2022 Grammy nominations. Drake was one of five nominees for Best Rap Album, for Certified Lover Boy, and for Best Rap Performance, for his song ‘Way 2 Sexy’ (featuring Future and Young Thug).
According to a report in Variety, the decision was made by Drake and his management and the Grammys honored the request although the reason behind the decision is still not known. Rather than giving a nomination to the recipients of the sixth-most votes, as the Academy did when it suddenly decided to expand the top four categories from eight to 10 last month, the voting for those two rap categories will go forward with just four nominees, presumably because the voting period already has begun; Grammy ballots were posted for voting members on Monday morning.
Drake’s choices of nominations were unusual, however. While it is uncertain whether he chose not to submit the blockbuster Certified Lover Boy or any songs from it for the big categories, Album, Song or Record of the Year his absence from any of those categories seems to suggest that he did not. He clearly did choose to submit and was nominated for the two rap categories he has withdrawn. Some have speculated that his decision might have something to do with him being named in lawsuits surrounding the tragedy at the Astroworld festival in Houston last month, where 10 people died when the crowd rampaged during headliner Travis Scott’s set, which featured a guest appearance from Drake.
A year ago, he called for them to be replaced with “something new that we can build up over time and pass on to the generations to come,” after it failed to recognize his peer and fellow Canadian artist The Weeknd in any of its 2021 categories, despite him having one of the top albums and singles of 2020.
In 2017, he declined to submit his album More Life for any 2018 Grammy awards, even though it qualified; the rancor around that year’s show intensified after Jay-Z won no awards despite being nominated for eight.Drake also threw shade at the Grammys during his acceptance speech in 2019, when ‘God’s Plan’ won Best Rap Song. The awards show producers cut off his mic after he claimed awards hold no value.
The 64th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony will be held at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles on January 31, 2022.
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